Thursday, February 17, 2011

Butternut Squash Gnocchi With Sage Brown Butter

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My favorite pasta of all times is butternut squash ravioli ,but making them at home has never been something I wanted to do.  You know me and flour, not my favorite thing to do on a rainy day.  My daughter is the pasta maker and I have been begging her to help me make the ravioli but since she doesn't like squash, it has been a non starter. When I saw this recipe I knew I had found the answer.  It is a bit labor intensive, no doubt, but if you do it in stages it will be much easier.

Serve squash puree  one night and save 1 cup for the gnocchi the next day.  Also, make it for two people and freeze the rest for another night.  That's what I would do. I wouldn't share my gnocchi with George Clooney himself.  Too much work, the gnocchi, not George.

Serves 4


1 1-pound butternut squash

1 tablespoon olive oil

1-2 12- to 14-ounce russet potato, peeled, quartered

3/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, divided

1 large egg, beaten to blend

1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 3/4 cups  all purpose flour

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter

2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage

Additional grated Parmesan cheese

Special Equipment:

Potato ricer


1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Cut squash lengthwise in half; discard seeds. Place squash halves, cut side up, on baking sheet and brush with oil. Roast until squash is very tender when pierced with skewer and browned in spots, about 1 1/2 hours. Cool slightly. Scoop flesh from squash into processor; puree until smooth. Transfer to medium saucepan; stir constantly over medium heat until juices evaporate and puree thickens, about 5 minutes. Cool. Measure 1 cup (packed) squash puree (reserve remaining squash for another use).

Note: This can be made several days in advance.

2. Meanwhile, cook potato in medium saucepan of boiling salted water until very tender, less than 20 minutes. Drain. While potato is warm, press through potato ricer into medium bowl; cool completely. Measure 2 cups (loosely packed) riced potato (reserve remaining potato for another use).

3. Mix squash, potato, 1/2 cup Parmesan, egg, nutmeg, and salt in large bowl. Gradually add 1 3/4 cups flour, kneading gently into mixture in bowl until dough holds together and is almost smooth. If dough is very sticky, add more flour by tablespoonfuls. Turn dough out onto floured surface; knead gently but briefly just until smooth. Divide dough into 8 equal pieces.

4. Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment. Sprinkle parchment lightly with flour. Working with 1 dough piece at a time, roll dough out on floured surface to about 1/2-inch-thick rope. Cut rope crosswise into 3/4-inch pieces. Working with 1 piece at a time, roll gnocchi along back of fork tines dipped in flour, making ridges on 1 side. Transfer gnocchi to baking sheets. Repeat with remaining dough. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and chill at least 1 hour. DO AHEAD Can be made 6 hours ahead. Keep chilled. Note: Gnocchi can be frozen at this point – freeze them first on a sheetpan, then transfer them to a Ziplock to prevent them from sticking together.

5. Working in 2 batches, cook gnocchi in large pot of boiling salted water until very tender, 15 to 17 minutes (gnocchi will float to surface but may come to surface before being fully cooked). Using slotted spoon, transfer gnocchi to same parchment-lined baking sheets. Cool. DO AHEAD Can be made 8 hours ahead. Cover loosely and chill.

6. Cook butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat just until golden, stirring often, 3 to 4 minutes. Add sage; stir 1 minute. Add gnocchi; cook until heated through and coated with butter, 5 to 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan. Serve with additional Parmesan.

Note: Unless you have an enormous pan, it’s easier to cook the gnocchi and butter in smaller batches. Half of this recipe in one pan is doable.

Source: Lidia Bastianich via Bon Appetit


  1. I have always wanted to make gnocchi - this looks so comforting and appealing. Thank you for sharing. I think I will try making this over the weekend - Mangia!

  2. gnocchi are one of my favorite dishes. Veni Vedi Vici serves them in a gorgonzola cream sauce that is delicious. Can't use that phrase "to die for" - not at my age!


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